PRODUCT REVIEW: THE GARMIN DASH CAM 65W

Ask any Australian driver today and most, if not all, will be familiar with dashboard cameras. This, in large part, is because of the crazy and insane videos that dashboard cameras have captured over the years, especially from Russian drivers, which have been uploaded onto the internet. These drivers have captured images of wild animals appearing out of nowhere, terrible car crashes, to enraged drivers attacking each other with bats and other objects. But, on the 15th of February, 2013 when a meteorite blazed over the Russian city of Chelyabinsk, drivers captured the insane footage of the fiery space debris on their dashboard cameras and posted the videos online… drawing immediate world-wide news coverage.

It used to be common practice for racing teams to use in-car cameras. Their purpose was to capture images of crashes for the team to document and analyse, but to also provide fans with exhilarating footage of their favourite race cars. As the popularity of in-car cameras grew, motorcyclists began using cameras on their helmets for similar reasons and this popularity flowed into law-enforcement, with police cars using dash cams to provide clear evidence of traffic infringements.

Now the practice is trickling into the mainstream, especially for us car enthusiasts. The reason is an at-fault accident can mean damage to your pride and joy, a loss of income as well as liability. This is why we got the Garmin Dash Cam 65W.

GARMIN DASH CAM 65W

– 180-degree field of view
– 1080p resolution; 2.1 megapixel camera
– 2.0″ LCD display
– Forward collision waring
– Lane departure warning
– Fixed red-light and speed cameras
– GPS enables
– Automatic incident detection (G-sensor)
– Voice command
– accepts up to 64 GB micro SD card, (sold separately, Class 10 required)
– Travelapse
– Wi-Fi
– Monitor your parked vehicle (Parking Mode cable available; sold separately)

WHAT’S IN THE BOX

– Dash Cam 65w
– Magnetic mount
– Vehicle power cable
– USBcable
– 8GB micro SD card
– Quick start manual

THE INSTALLATION

There is not a great deal to know when installing the Garmin 65W dash cam. It is simple and easy to install like any other mounted device. We found installing the Garmin to our car was easy, as it is small, compact and fitted in most places. This is a good thing, because it is important to note that when you are mounting your dash cam to not obstruct your windshield. We decided to put it a little extra effort to hide the wires, see steps below.

  • Position dash cam in a suitable spot that doesn’t obstruct your view.

  • Locate vehicle interior fuse box and route wiring from dash cam towards fuse box area. Wiring can be tucked under headliner and behind trims for a clean install.

  • Locate a fuse that is powered up when key is turned to ACC.

  • Piggy back into the fuse using an “add-a-circuit fuse holder”.

  • Grab a female cigg socket adaptor and connect the positive wire to the fuse holder and the negative wire to an earth point on the vehicle.

  • 
Insert the power plug from the dash cam into the cigg socket and you’re done.

THE VERDICT

The Garmin 65w looks neat in the S15 interior and because of its sleek and compact design does not obstruct your view when doing highway pulls. The build quality is great and the 2” screen is clear and quite visible. The voice control function allows you to use your voice to take photos and videos while you are driving; perfect for when you have both hands on the wheel.

Since owning the Garmin 65w, I have come to realise how important it is to have a dash cam and I recommend all people have one installed. They give you peace of mind as you know that your car will be protected and you will be able to defend yourself if anything arises in which you need to prove that you were not at fault. To end I would like to leave you with a quote from Aleksei Dozorov, a motorists’ rights activist in Russia, who told Radio Free Europe last year, “You can get into your car without your pants on, but never get into a car without a dash cam.”


INTRODUCING OUR PROJECT RB26/30 S15 SILVIA

In many car circles, mention the Nissan 200sx S15 and straight away people know that the car is synonymous with beautiful looks. But, more importantly, the ability to turn this modest Japanese sports car into an absolute powerhouse.

For this reason I knew I had to own one. I wanted and needed to know what all the hype was about; so I began sourcing my own S15.

I was looking for a S15 that had the ability to be something special, by allowing me to add my own flavour to it. Admit it… we all buy cars with the intention of turning it into our very own unique ride.

After months of searching for just the right one, I found it in Canberra. I had found the holy grail of S15’s; An RB26 swapped S-Chassis’. I knew I had to own it, because at the time, this was a rarity and having previously owned an R33 GT-R, you could say I become ‘addicted.’ After inspecting the car, I found the RB conversion to be decent and the motor stock. Although the exterior was rough, I drove it home… then the fun began.

Less than-a-week of owning the car I purchased the custom plates MR026. Within two weeks of owning the car I had purchased 17” Enkei RPF1 wheels and immediately took the car to Heasmans steering to sort out the wheel alignment. That evening we went to 2SUS Custom Resprays to check out the respray on another car and… well… I left the mine there to get painted. I had no idea what I wanted, I just knew it had to be done and I was not going to trust anyone, other than the guys at 2SUS Custom Resprays. After careful consideration I had settled on the colour; it was going to be painted in Grigio Telesto… a colour that is used on Lamborghini’s.

While the car was getting its new paint, I found an Aero front bar and rear pods from JSAI that fitted perfectly and would complete the look I wanted. I had all these parts installed and a new paint job within three weeks of owning the car, but I wasn’t done yet. This would only be the start of my journey.

The next step was to have the car inspected for some overheating issues; nothing major, I just wanted to make sure the car was running well. So, I took it to Anthony at Dahtone Racing to get it checked over. Not only did I sort out the overheating issues, I had Anthony install a full R33 GTS-T rear subframe, including axels and a LSD ABS differential. Anthony also installed R34 GT-R Brembo brakes all around, which I then had painted in Ferrari Yellow by 2SUS Custom Resprays.

I drove the car for a few months with the new modifications, but I was becoming increasingly bored and underwhelmed with power and drive-ability of the factory twin-turbos. I wanted and needed a power boost, so I dropped the car off at Dahtone Racing. This time around the stock RB26 block got a precision big-single turbo set-up with all the bells and whistles and a new clutch to cope with the increase in power. None other than Mick, at Mick’s Motorsport tuned the car on e85 fuel and the car was now producing a healthy 380rwkw.

I thoroughly enjoyed driving the car now with the increase in power and it’s new looks. It was fun, fast and started turning heads. But, less than three weeks later, the motor spun-a-bearing and started to knock badly; because of the dodgy conversion the previous workshop did with the RB26. I was annoyed with this, because the car had been in the shop more than I had driven it since I owned it. After carefully considering my options, I took the car back to Dahtone Racing to get fixed, but this time I was going to do it right.

The S15 got treated to a RB30 block with a fully forged bottom end, using Nitto Performance parts. When it was time to tune the car the Power FC, which came with the car, was finally tossed aside and a Haltech ECU was installed. Mick from Mick’s Motorsport worked his magic again, this time extracting 434rwkw or 583rwhp, on a conservative 21 PSI. These performance numbers are modest, and although it is a weapon to drive, the car barely gets traction. So, I switched my focus to the exterior to help improve the overall ride.

I sourced some genuine Nismo LMGT4 wheels in 18×9 + 22 and had our good friends at Prestige Tyre and Auto fit the rims with Bridgestone Potenza RE 003 tyres. The rims were not the colour I wanted, so I had the guys at 2SUS paint them in gloss black. To complete the aesthetics, I added a front splitter from Flow Designs Australia and side and rear extensions from JSAI.

The car had finally come together, the way I envisioned it. From the new and improved RB30 block, to the Lamborghini Grigio Telesto colour scheme, the S15 was now becoming my own. The car in the current state has provided me with so much fun and excitement, but I do not know how long this will last before I feel the power needs to increase. I have already thought of taking the car back to Dahtone Racing for a fuel system upgrade, because I believe the current fuel system is holding back the power, as I want to chase 700 plus horse power at the wheels.

Whatever the future holds for the S15, I know that it will be in good hands, and I will continue to share the journey with you…


OUR RB26 POWERED S14 GETS SOME FAT RUBBER

We are all about the performance of your car. We understand that speed is king, but that is nothing unless you have the right tyres to help unleash that power onto the road. So, we went and visited the guys at Prestige Tyre and Auto Service. They fitted a set of brand new Achilles 123s tyres, on the TE37SL rims, of the RB26 powered Nissan S14… and we couldn’t be happier!

Thanks to the team at Prestige Tyre and Auto Service for treating the TE37SL’s like royalty. Check out the video below to see the new tyres being fitted to the RB-8055.


INTRODUCING OUR PROJECT RB26DETT S14 SILVIA

In the world of ‘project cars’ we can all agree that the way a project car begins, from the initial ideas of how it will look, are never the way it finishes. That is because cars, unlike other projects, begin as just a car. A finished product that you drive on a daily basis. But, when this daily drive becomes functional art, there are more than one way to make it your own.

This is the story of my Nissan 200SX S14. The journey begins on the 7th of May, 2017. I bought the car from a guy in Canberra. The car had the original SR20 swapped for an RB26DETT 34 GT-R engine and turbos, an R33 gearbox, a full Vertex body kit (painted in Mazda pearl white), full suede interior re-trim, genuine Bride seats, half-roll cage, Rays T37SL wheels and race spec cusco coil-overs.

Let me say, thanks to the coil-overs, it was one of the bumpiest and longest drives of my life. But, that still did not deter me from what I had planned for the car, and that was I use it as my daily.

The reason I wanted to use the car as a daily was because, at the time, I owned a Mazda RX2. I had the RX2 for over 12 years and it had gone through a number of modifications and was not looking at modifying anything else at the time.

All I wanted to do was turn the S14 into a ‘more police friendly’ vehicle. This lasted all of about a week and then I decided it was time to sell the RX2. Now, it was time to turn my S14 from a daily drive, into my project car.

Although the car was purchased with pre-existing modifications, I see it as a good starting point for what I want out of the car. Like all car enthusiasts, the aim is to build it my way, starting with the body kit.

The plan is to change the turbo setup to either a big single or larger twins, a Haltech computer, Racepack dash and a big fuel setup. From there, change the brakes to Evo 8 Brembo brakes and some possible interior changes.

When I purchased the car the first thing I did was change the plates, tyres and the suspension. Yes, the race spec coil-overs were good, but, I wanted the car to sit on the floor. So, I had an Air Lift air-bag suspension setup fitted to the car.

To my surprise the air bag suspension provided the S14 with quite impressive handling considering it was now on air and it became the basis for my build.

As my S14 begins its process from my daily drive, to my ultimate goal, my own version of a super neat street car, I am going to share the experience with you all. I want all enthusiasts to share my experience with me.

I know, only too well, the good, the bad and the ugly of it all. But, once it is all said and done, there is no better feeling than turning your vision into a reality.

I hope you enjoy the ride!